BBC Sport tennis

IN ASSOCIATION WITH

Related BBC sites

Page last updated at 17:06 GMT, Tuesday, 22 June 2010 18:06 UK

Anne Keothavong, Jamie Baker and Heather Watson go out

Wimbledon Championships
Venue: All England Club, London Date: 21 June - 4 July
Coverage:
Live on BBC One and Two, HD, Red Button, BBC Sport website (UK only), Radio 5 live, 5 live sports extra; live text commentary online and on mobile phones; watch again on BBC iPlayer Full details of BBC coverage

Anne Keothavong

Highlights - Keothavong loses out in final set

By Phil Maiden
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

Anne Keothavong, Heather Watson and Jamie Baker followed four British women on Monday in losing their first-round matches at Wimbledon.

Keothavong threw away a 4-0 lead in the final set to crash out 3-6 6-2 6-4 to Australia's Anastasia Rodionova.

Debutant Watson, 18, also won a set but finally went down 6-4 1-6 6-3 to Italian Romina Sarina Oprandi.

Baker, the only Briton in the men's singles apart from Andy Murray, lost 7-6 (7-4) 6-3 6-4 to Andreas Beck.

British number three Keothavong seemed set to become the first home woman into round two after breaking Rodionova twice in the final set but her opponent levelled the set at 4-4 on her sixth break point in a 15-minute eighth game.

In a match containing 13 breaks of serve, she held firm to move ahead before wrapping up victory.

Nerves got the better of me - Keothavong

"Nerves got the better of me to be honest," she said. "I fought my heart out out there but she held her nerve better than I did."

Keothavong denied that the results of the British women on the opening day of the Championships had any affect on her performance.

"That had nothing to do with it," she explained. "On court I was fully focused on what was going on my own game and what I had to do.

"There is so much pressure on all of us British players here and it just didn't happen. It is unfortunate but life goes on and nobody has died.

"In another few weeks we will have another opportunity to compete at a high level. We are all working hard. Wimbledon is important and we all want to do well here but it is not the be all and end all."

606: DEBATE
wal1000

Londoner Keothavong had raced ahead in the first set before the Australian broke back to level the score at 2-2.

But the Briton then battled her way to a 4-2 lead, with an excellent forehand return at 30-15 down in the sixth game proving to be a turning point.

And despite being put off by Rodionova's gamesmanship as she lost another service game, Keothavong then produced an excellent cross-court drop shot to peg the Australian back again before serving out the serve.

Keothavong continued to struggle with her first serve in the second, losing her fifth service game of the match after a Rodionova return that appeared to be long was called in.

Despite winning the set the Australian looked rattled in the third, losing her opening service game as Keothavong raced to what appeared to be an unassailable lead.

But as soon as she failed to win a game, the Briton collapsed, allowing Rodionova to complete, what seemed, an unlikely turnaround.

Heather Watson

Highlights - Watson takes Oprandi to three sets

Watson, who won the junior US Open in 2009, failed to take advantage of Oprandi requiring medical attention on three occasions in the opening set.

The Italian broke early to take a 2-1 lead and although Watson grew in confidence, which was displayed by an unstoppable backhand return in the seventh game, she was unable to fight back.

But the Guernsey player built on her solid streak in the second set, with Oprandi dropping a service game for the first time after being forced to make a mistake after a long rally.

The teenager then broke the Italian for a second time as the world number 139 allowed her to go on and serve for the set.

And Watson looked to be heading for a memorable victory when breaking Oprandi early in the final set before the Italian instantly fought back levelling the scores at 2-2.

It was a lot of fun playing in my first Grand Slam, my first Wimbledon and the crowd was awesome

Heather Watson

But with both players looking nervous, with a further three breaks of serve, Oprandi came out on top to reach the second round for the first time.

"My nerves were at the beginning of the match, then I started loosening up," she said. "I didn't play up in the court enough, which I've got to learn to do.

"I was dying to win. I wasn't able to serve at my best. I think I need to get fitter for these matches.

"I'm disappointed that I lost but I've learned a lot. It was a lot of fun playing in my first Grand Slam, my first Wimbledon and the crowd was awesome."

Meanwhile Baker, who was controversially awarded a wildcard, was beaten in straight sets by Beck.

Baker glad to play 'up a level'

The world number 253 held his own with some powerful first serves in the opening set and saved three set points in the tie-break.

But after that the German, ranked 79, took control and strolled to a routine victory with one break in each of the next two sets.

It was the Scot's fourth consecutive first-round exit at Wimbledon but he believes he can move up the rankings.

The 23-year-old, whose career was hampered by a serious blood disorder in 2008, said: I'm getting close, certainly in the last three or four weeks I've been exposed to this level every day.

"I've only had three matches but I've had a lot of good practice. I know I can compete with these guys, although I haven't won any.

"I'm more interested in getting here on my own merit. The real thank you for getting a wildcard is using it to move forward."



Print Sponsor


BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.